Before we got back to Port Charles, we had noticed that the bow thruster sounded kind of sick and the batteries were showing low voltage. Joe was concerned that the battery charger and the batteries for it had gone kaput. The charger…
Tag Archives | Great Harbour
St. Charles, MO to St. Petersburg, FL (Sept. 25 to Nov. 11, 2014)
the gateway to the ‘goofy 200’. We were
told at Hoppies’ Marina that the River had crested (wouldn’t be rising any
more) at 20 feet above normal. We
decided to give it a day to slow down, and so stopped at the Kaskaskia River Lock,
and easy 35 or so miles from Hoppies.
working at that lock wall before, but this time, Charlie was pumping water out
of the floating docks. Twice a year, he
says, this is necessary due to condensation as well as rain collection and, of
course, leaks. Charlie, bless him,
checked with Matt, who was in charge of the lock. Result? We were invited to climb the ladder and visit
the Visitors’ Center.
adventure. Made more fun by two
facts—one is that the lockmaster always says
“Don’t climb the ladders” when we arrive at the lock wall. The other is that we are slightly less than
spring chickens, and we wonder whether or not the invitation would have come,
had Matt known…
it only accommodates tows that are two barges wide. Southern Illinois coal was its’ major
shipment out before federal regulation sharply diminished the use of high sulfur
content coal. Now, limestone goes into Southern Illinois via the Kaskaskia Lock,
and is used to remove the sulfur dioxide from the emissions at the local power
plant, where the local coal is burned.
Business and industry are very complex.
lock wall by Brian and Terry aboard POSH.
They quickly left us in their wake the next morning when we both set out
for the debris-filled scoot to Cairo.
And a scoot it was. High speed
(for us) and hand-steering (vs setting the autopilot and watching…) as the logs and trees were constant. We reached the turn into the Ohio at Cairo at
5:05 pm, and 8 miles (at a sudden drop to 8 miles per hour) later were
peacefully anchored for the night. We
averaged 10.5 mph for the 11 hours we were underway!
once again at Green Turtle Bay, and concern about the deluges of rain were a
thing of the past. We’re now in waters
whose levels are managed by dams with locks for us to pass through.
Tennessee River—a Cyprus tree growing several feet from the shoreline (today,
at least—shorelines are quite movable!) whose knees make it appear to be
sitting on a table. We marveled at the
difference in housing on the two sides of the river. On our left (the Right Descending Bank—rivers
are so designated as they do not run cleanly from north to south. But they are always flowing downstream, so we
are ‘upbound’ on the Tennessee, as it is hurrying toward us as fast as it can go,
so it can spill into the Ohio and then add to the fun on the Mississippi) is a
manicured, high maintenance, lovely home with boathouse. On the opposite shore, a flood-protected
dwelling—also with outbuilding.
now cruising in tandem with CAROLYN ANN, Joe and Punk Pica. We paused at Aqua Harbor, a few miles from
the Shiloh battlefields of the Civil War, and then we entered the
Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway for our seventh excursion to Mobile.
first, then downright foggy, but we were able to proceed with confidence as we
were motoring (with radar) up the 20+ mile long Divide Cut—the largest undertaking to date
by the Army Corps of Engineers. The cut
is just that. A chasm cut through the
land and dug to a water depth of at least 9’ to accommodate towboats. A major project where only land had to be
moved, a huge undertaking to allow the trains to continue on their tracks…
time, and the 12 locks (the “Not-so-dirty-dozen” according to Fred Myers’ guide
book) seem like a breeze after the 27 of the Mississippi!
Columbus—once again spoke with but didn’t see Jan and Dan Barnett, my Aberdeen,
SD classmate and her husband– and Demopolis, where the new Kingfisher Marina
is a welcoming place, with great floating docks and a large, clean
the 216 miles between Demopolis and Mobile. We found two great anchorages
before the Mobile skyline appeared on
the horizon. 80 mile days! Fast for us! The Austal company has the usual big, ugluy boat out in front, but close inspection
showed it to be number 6, not the number 4 we photographed a year ago. Guess they are working!
Marine in Mobile. Will again leave YOUNG
AMERICA here for a few days while I have a reunion with Nursing buddies Maureen
and Freddie in Albuquerque. Fred will go
to Newburgh to hang out with daughter Linda, recovering at home from a Knee
and do continue to breathe!
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Moline to Moline and beyond
|almost twins, steaming up the Upper!|
|3 Nurses from the Swedish Hospital Sch. of Nsg. Way back when!|
|For sure Norwegians!|
There has been a LOT of rain in the past few weeks, and the extra water ends up in the river. So locking was also speeded by the fact that the water is again so high (crested at 20 feet above normal here at St. Louis today) that the lock drop might be 2 feet instead of 10, or 5 instead of 28. As the river level rises the debris on the shores gets picked up, and pushed downstream. Weaving through logs, manny the size of telephone poles, as well as assorted branches and trunks is challenging and tiring. We;re told that the water level will drop 2-3 feet per day for the next 5 or 6 days, and the flotsam will return to the banks.
St. Charles, MO to Mississippi River end of Navigation and back (Aug 15 to Sep 25)
It was finally time to leave Port Charles Harbor, so Young America and Carolyn Ann headed out. The high water, carrying lots of debris, that we saw when we arrived had passed on by. As a matter of fact, we were concerned that the water mi…
St. Louis to the Quad Cities
|SEA DREAM’s bow and YOUNG AMERICA at MSC, St. Louis|
|Walking around the lake with Casey, Becca and Ruby.|
While I was away, Fred moved YOUNG AMERICA to the Port Charles Harbor Marina, and there she remained until August 15.
|So long, SEA DREAM!|
|Two N-37’s in the Muscatine, IA harbor.|
|Rock crushes scissors….Joe got the 50 amp. plug–we had to use two 30 amp cords.|
Had a late lunch with my big brother Gene, always a treat!
|Jet pilot and Submarinerr. A very special pair!|
He lives about 20 min. away, in Geneseo, IL.
|CAROLYN ANN is through the wingdam gap. Our turn. Note the wind blowing the yellow flag.|
The alternative was a long wait at the main chamber as a backup of towboats come downriver after being held up by dredging of a shallow. impassable (for them) spot several miles north. We were happy with the Auxiliary Chamber and all of its’ extras!
Peoria, IL to St. Charles, MO (July 12 to August 14)
The IVY Club was a great stop for us. We got a car from Enterprise and drove to Abingdon, IL where Joe’s aunt Kay is currently living in a nursing home – after several broken bones and two hip replacements. She corrected Joe on her age …
Old Lock #1 to the Mighty Mississippi
I wasn’t much company, as I spent most of the days tucked away in a conference room working on the exam for a celestial navigation course. (Completed it and sent it off for grading on July 29th.)
Getting ready to travel meant getting Fred’s back squared away. We found the Orthopedic Specialists of Western Kentucky in Paducah, and can’t say enough good things about them. The first floor of their huge building is devoted to Urgent Care (Ortho only, please) and Physical Therapy. Looks like about an acre of machines, with a steady flow of folks moving through their paces under the watchful eyes of lots of Therapists.
Fred was seen (as soon as he completed theinevitable ream of paper work) by, among others, Ben, a very pleasant and competent Orthopedic Physician’s Assistant. In the blink of an eye, X-Rays of Fred’s thoracic spine were read, and within an hour we were at a local hospital for an MRI. Ben phoned us (we weren’t even back to the Marina yet—can you believe it?) to say that there is a fracture in T-10! Fred’s been walking around—slowly and with great pain—with a fractured vertabra! Put more simply, he has a broken back. A brace was ordered over the weekend, and on Monday morning we were back to pick it up.
What a difference it has made! Within a day there was a noticeable improvement in the level of pain, and by Friday he could lie down and get up again without so much as a wince! Add in the PT exercises he was given and you have one super therapeutic operation! The cause of the fracture is said to be compression from Fred’s developing a ‘kyphotic’ (think question mark shaped back) curve–probably from the gazillion hours he spends hunched over his computer or the wheel of the boat. Make that he used to hunch. Now he leans in from the hip. We will continue to follow up to be assured that all is well.
Rave reviews for Ortho Specialists. Another of the worker-bees, Tripp, kindly printed out directions to the hospital, and thence to the Pharmacy, and as a bonus gave us a flier inviting us to the Fall Celebration in late September in Paducah!
So we are good to go!
The Mississippi flooding has continued well past spring this year, and the River is barely back in its banks in many places. River levels came down a foot a day (confirmed by Joe and Punk aboard CAROLYN ANN just above St. Louis) and by Thursday, July 31 we were as ready as we were likely to get, and tossed the lines. Had an oops as we were underway—-I left my iPad in the Courtesy car the marina provides (and a fine Dodge van it is!!!)
|Harbormaster Bill and his faithful pup “Pistol”|
Bless his heart, HarborMaster Bill drove the iPad to Paducah (1/2 hour by car) and bless HIS heart, Mike took me for a dinghy ride to the boat ramp to retrieve it! Good people going above and beyond!
|We are told that cement blocks are going in to form the dam.|
At Cairo, IL the Mississippi divides into the ‘Upper’—-875 miles north to Minneapolis—and the ‘Lower’—-950 miles south to New Orleans. We very carefully turned to the right to enter the 200 miles of open water (no locks or dams) that stretches to St. Louis.
|The looooooong lock wall at theKaskaskia River.|
The next day, we actually got up to 6.5 mph for 2.5 minutes! Averaged 4 miles/hour from 6 a.m. to 2:35 p.m., when we tied up to the newly re-done long lock wall on the Kaskaskia River, Mile 117.5. Fred and I have been there 3 times before, and it has been different each time we stop. When the sun gets lower and it cools a bit (87 degrees out there now) we can go for a walk before we sleep.
Two months at Turner July 14, 2014
|Sunset at Turner Marine|
First, a good word for the Marina! Fred returned to the boat pretty frazzled after a 3 flight, broken airplane, 2 hour delay, rental car at 9 pm and only Airplane—-no, make that Airport food (no food on planes anymore, is there?) sort of day. Next morning, as he finished soaking the kinks away in a hot shower, a yard worker came to check on the boat. The worker, unaware that Fred had returned, noticed water coming out the side and came to check on the bilge pumps! Happily, the water was coming from the shower and all was well. That is the sort of attention you want your boat to have when you are away! Sing HO for Turner’s!
|With the French family on the submarine TORSK in Baltimore|
Salon Lucere (before officially open, but doing lots of business) was voted into the Top 5 in the Hudson Valley when the Times-Herald Record asked readers to choose their favorites! Talk about loyal clientele! And Ada and her crew (including granddaughter Devyn) are stellar! They deserve all the good that is out there!
Tonawanda, NY to Peoria, IL (June 18 to July 11, 2014)
We had arrived in Tonawanda before noon and scheduled a one day Enterprise rental. We had hoped to do some laundry (only $1/load for each machine) and pump-out. When we arrived, no dock attendant was there and everything was locked up – and…
Solomons, MD to Tonawanda, NY (April 29 to June 17)
Our next stop was Bruce and Joan’s dock on Gingerville Creek in Annapolis. It was sad to see the empty dock as we arrived, but at least we knew that Forever 39 had gone to a good home; having become Janet and Jerry’s boat At Last. It’s alwa…